A successful event is every organiser’s dream and receiving accolades from the client is the cherry on top. An event to be successful though is no cakewalk though, it is an amalgamation of meticulous planning, hard work and luck too for everything to run seamlessly. An experienced event organizer is not only adept at chalking an itinerary but also foreseeing possible hindrances and being prepared to overcome them.
Even the most expert organisers admit to have missed important details one time or the other. We have created a simple checklist to keep you on track when everything else seems to be going helter skelter.
MAKE A TO-DO AND CONTACT LIST: The first rule of being an event organizer is to keep your planner handy and consider your contact list to be more precious than family heirlooms. Organising an event involves coordinating with a number of people and you cannot afford to run into a problem simply because you did not store contact details at the right time. Your to-do list is equally as important as it will help you remain organized and in-charge at all times. Making a digital file either an excel spreadsheet or Google sheets is a great idea so you can access them on your phone or tablet any time.
VENUE PLANNING: Selecting an event venue is an arduous task and one should devote enough time in making a decision. Keep in mind the time of the year, venue location, parking availability if holding a large-scale event, venue capacity, loading bays if heavy equipment needs to be installed and of course the rental fee. The venue is no doubt the most important part of organizing an event so it becomes even more critical to make an informed choice basis the aforementioned factors.
SELECTING A CATERING COMPANY: The first thing people notice at an event is the food. You want to be able to offer a selection of food options without overshooting the budget. Get quotes from a number of caterers and do food trials much in advance to avoid last-minute hassles. Also, make sure to book the company months prior to the event as availability might be limited during peak event season.
GETTING THE AV EQUIPMENT SORTED: Whether you are organizing a concert or a trade show, audio-visual equipment and sound quality are vital elements for an event to be a success. In case of a concert, you may want to get the AV requirements from the performer’s management team. You can also check with the venue about the companies they have dealt with in the past as they might have better knowledge about the venue specifications and limitations if any.
CONFIRMING THE SPEAKER SCHEDULE: Getting a number of speakers to participate in your event is one of the most crucial jobs for any event manager. Make sure you have the guest speakers or panel members’ dates booked months in advance and have a back-up plan in place in the event of cancellations.
CONNECTIVITY: Apart from the exhibitors and speakers, an event may be attended by media or key government officials. If you have a media room or break-out rooms between sessions, you may want to offer the attendees the option to remain connected to the internet via all times through event wifi or portable wifi/cellular devices that function both indoor and outdoor. Guests appreciate nothing more than the added effort of having access to free wifi at events that ensures no downtime during live streaming or social media updates.
You will be better armed with managing crisis and averting catastrophes when you have your event plan ready and raring to go. The checklist will make sure you don’t miss anything and your event goes smoothly. All the best!